Senate candidate Roy Moore sent a fundraising email that relied on Breitbart.com’s false claims that a woman who said the Alabama Republican sexually assaulted her had admitted she forged her evidence.
Breitbart.com has been conducting an all-out campaign for Moore in the lead-up to the state’s December 12 special election. Moore told Bloomberg’s Joshua Green that site chairman Steve Bannon is “the counter to the ‘fake news’ -- he’s been a stalwart … It’s helped us a lot. He’s the master strategist.” Breitbart has especially been running cover for Moore from reports about his sexual misconduct, including assault. Vox’s Brian Resnick reported that Moore campaign talking points cite Breitbart.com as “evidence that the accusations are untrue.”
Beverly Young Nelson has said that Moore sexually assaulted her when he was in his 30s and she was 16. As evidence, Nelson has shown a yearbook which she said contains Moore’s signature and a message from him. Nelson recently said that she added some notes following the inscription and his signature.
Right-wing media outlets such as Breitbart, The Gateway Pundit, and Fox News have twisted Nelson’s remark to claim she admitted that she “forged” her evidence. In reality, as PolitiFact and others have noted, “Nelson does not claim she tampered with Moore’s actual signature. She said she added a time and location below the signature. Nelson still attributes the note and signature to Moore.”
Moore’s campaign has used the right-wing media disinformation about Nelson’s statement to raise campaign funds.
He sent a December 9 fundraising email attacking Nelson for purportedly admitting “to fabricating portions of the yearbook” and claimed the “liberal media” is refusing to cover the story but “some conservative and alternative news sites are picking up on it.”
Moore’s email touted the false Breitbart.com stories “Limbaugh on Roy Moore Yearbook Inscription: ‘The Perp Has Admitted She Forged It’” and “Don Jr. Blasts Gloria Allred After Bombshell Admission of Forgery.” From the email (highlights in original):
He later added: “So won't you please chip in a donation to help me bust through the media blackout and get the truth out to voters across Alabama?”
Moore’s campaign Facebook page shared the false Breitbart story “Bombshell: Roy Moore Accuser Beverly Nelson Admits She Forged Yearbook.” Moore’s Twitter account also tweeted out Fox News’ false claim -- since corrected -- that Nelson admitted “she forged part of yearbook inscription.”
The pro-Moore Club for Conservatives PAC also used Breitbart to fundraise in a paid email through Breitbart’s mailing list. The PAC, which has a mysterious background, sent a December 9 email with the false Breitbart headline: “Bombshell: Roy Moore Accuser Beverly Nelson Admits She Forged Yearbook.” That fundraising email also contains a picture of Steve Bannon with Moore.